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Two Bodies Found By Search Team In Joshua Tree National Park
The San Bernardino Sheriff's Department announced that two bodies were found in Joshua Tree National Park on Sunday. The bodies were discovered near where a couple went missing two and a half months ago.
The Sheriff's Department was notified of the bodies' around 1:50 p.m. Sunday, according to the L.A. Times. The Sheriff's Department delayed the recovery of the bodies until this morning due to loss of daylight in the park.
Joshua Tree - due to loss of daylight yesterday, the recovery of 2 missing hikers will occur this morning. ID’s will be pending autopsies.— San Bernardino County Sheriff (@sbcountysheriff) October 16, 2017
The bodies have yet to be identified, so it is unclear whether they're the remains of Rachel Nguyen, 20, and Joseph Orbeso, 21, who went missing in July after failing to check out of their Airbnb rental in the park. It was over 100 degrees in the park at the time the couple went missing.
The bodies were discovered a few miles from Maze Loop, which is where authorities believed the couple went missing, according to ABC. The couple's car was recovered in the Maze Loop area during the initial search. At that time, hundreds of people and personnel were searching for the missing couple, according to the L.A. Times. The size of the search waned, but smaller teams continued to focus on finding the missing couple.
The bodies were discovered by a search team that included Gilbert Orbeso, Joseph's father. Orbeso and the team noticed clothing, food wrappers, and water bottles before locating the bodies, according to ABC, and he is convinced the recovered bodies are those of his son and Nguyen.